ey kw'ese xwe' í mékw'ewát
Welcome to all. It's good that we are all here.
(həṅq̓əmín̓əḿ, the downriver dialect of Halkomelem, is still spoken by Katzie peoples)
Bothwell Elementary is located on the traditional, unceded territories of the Katzie First Peoples. When we gather in community, we remember that acknowledging whose land we work, live and play upon is an essential part of our commitment to reconciliation.
We are a community of just under 300 wonder-filled students, K-7, a staff of just over 40 caring adults, and hundreds of supportive family members. Nearly 60% of our students speak a language other than English at home. In addition to daily learning routines, we also enjoy time spent with buddy classes, having fun on Spirit Days, watching our leadership team lead Sports Day, making music in grade 7 band, field studies in Tynehead Park, and playing on various sports teams.
We are grateful for the enduring support of our PAC. With their generous efforts, time and fundraising, we enjoy special events such as school-wide Hip Hop and ArtStarts performances, as well as contributions towards our outdoor classroom, bussing on field studies, classroom materials, numerous hot lunch events, and Sports Day treats.
We treasure the natural beauty of our grounds, including Salh Tumuxw (our learning circle), located on the front lawn near the school gardens.
We are curious...
about the impact of outdoor play and learning on student well-being.
We value Outdoor Play and Learning (OPAL) and dedicate professional learning, resources and time to enrich students' outdoor experiences. Through research and lived experience, we know there are many benefits to taking learning outdoors. These range from improved emotional well-being with a reduction in anxiety, to increased engagement both inside and outside the classroom, to greater experiential learning that lends itself to student-led inquiry, to an increase in divergent thinking and problems solving across our competency-based curriculum (Source: Megan Zeni, professional development August 2021).
Given many positive outcomes to learning, well-being, relationships with one another and with the land, we remain dedicated and continue our vision of providing more opportunities for OPAL at Bothwell.
We GROW together...
and celebrate each student's progress in all aspects of learning and development.
Staff collaboratively developed an acronym that best captured some of the traits and competencies we value in our community, and want to continue celebrating and developing within students:
We celebrate student learning, achievement, excellence and growth at our monthly GROW assemblies.
Our last Student Learning Plan continued to focus on the four common pillars of learning in the BC math curriculum, grades K-12. Our students engage in rich learning activities that foster growth in each of these four pillars:
We continued on with a focus on the four pillars, however this spring we added how students were developing their skills and gaining confidence in the math they were learning and their understanding of how they learn math best.
The four sections below provide information and examples that illustrate how all learners are engaged in these competency areas as well as where we found our goals began to shift for our learners.
1. Reasoning and Analyzing: Our learners develop mental math strategies to make sense of quantities.
Students are working towards developing fluent and flexible thinking about number. Learners are exposed to different methods of developing strategies in every classroom, K-7, and continue to build complexity of understanding throughout their elementary education.
Our learners have opportunities to model mathematics in real-world situations where they make connections between what they are learning and mathematics in everyday life. Students use manipulatives (concrete materials), pictures, graphs, and diagrams to process and show their learning.
2. Understanding and Solving: Our learners develop, demonstrate, and apply mathematical understanding through play, inquiry, and problem solving
Our learners have opportunities to develop and use multiple strategies to engage in problem solving. This includes visual and oral story-telling using items such as loose parts, dominoes, and pattern blocks, written and symbolic forms, as well as through play. An effective strategy that invites playful thinking is to use vertical surfaces. This process invites students to communicate with one another as they explore their thinking, to get messy while writing on the white board, and to take risks in their thinking as they problem solve.
3. Communicating and Representing: Our learners communicate their thinking in many ways.
As students are provided with multiple ways to understand and problem-solve, they communicate their thinking in various ways: concretely, pictorially, symbolically, and by using spoken or written language to express, describe, explain, justify, and apply mathematical ideas.
4. Connecting and Reflecting: Our learners reflect on mathematical thinking.
Students share their own mathematical thinking with their teacher and with their peers. This includes evaluating their chosen strategies and solutions, extending their thinking to new situations, and posing new problems and questions to one another. Deeper reflection serves to help students develop a sense of how mathematics helps us understand ourselves and the world around us. For example, students work with problems pertaining to comparison shopping, working with money, assessing changes in our environment through data collection, tracking climate and weather patterns, etc.
As indicated by Foundation Skills Assessment (FSA) data below, over the past four years, our students in grades 4 and 7 are near to or above the district average in numeracy:
FSA assessments tell part of students' learning journeys. Classroom assessments are the best indicators for identifying students' strengths, and where they need to develop further understanding and proficiency.
As we have continued on with this in our second year, we have started to see that we would like to growing and learning on how we can help build confidence in our student’s ability to share their thinking.
This year we have added the core competencies to understanding;
Students who are personally aware and responsible take ownership of their choices and actions. They set goals, monitor progress and understand their emotions, using that understanding to regulate actions and reactions. They are aware that learning involves patience and time. They can persevere in difficult situations, and understand how their actions affect themselves and others. The core competencies of personal awareness and responsibility are embedded throughout the BC curriculum. Evidence of our learners’ competencies and development are provided below.
Our learners developing their skills express their learning needs, seek help and advocate for themselves.
Over the year our teachers have been building our students' confidence to enable them to seek help and to develop skills to be able to self-advocate for their needs in their learning math. Throughout the school year the teachers have seen an improvement in the students' abilities to problem solve and in their understanding of what they may need to help them learn better, such as noise cancelling headphones or one-on-one support from a peer or teacher.
Our learners understand that learning takes patience and time. They are developing strategies to persevere in their understanding of new concepts, different perspectives and difficult situations.
Many of our classes have provided opportunities to share their perspectives and to listen to other points of views during math discussions. Our students have also been learning the difference between having a growth and fixed mindset.
Each and every day our team of educators at Bothwell Elementary weave social emotional learning into their day-to-day lessons. Working with our students we have been focusing on developing our student’s self-management skills when learning math. Using the core competency, Personal Awareness and Responsibility, we wanted our students to become personally aware and responsible individuals who are able to take steps to regulate their emotions, monitor their progress, to be able to set and adjust learning goals, and able to recognize and advocate for their own rights. We wanted our math learners to continue with their math goals but now we wanted them to become self-aware of who they were as math learners; What did they need to understand? What tools worked best for them? Where did they need to improve?
Our team focused on students learning important skills to demonstrate personal awareness and responsibility through developing the ability to;
Students’ reflections are what has guided us on our journey towards our focus of self-management. We have used surveys from this year to help us with gathering evidence from our student learners as well as teacher observations, and student self-reflections.
From the BC Curriculum Core Competency; “Students who are personally aware and responsible take ownership of their choices and actions. They set goals, monitor progress and understand their emotions, using that understanding to regulate actions and reactions. They are aware that learning involves patience and time. They can persevere in difficult situations, and to understand how their actions affect themselves and others."
We had a cohort made up of one grade 1 class and one grade 6/7 class, they became the focus for gathering evidence of learning. These observations are shared in "Our Next Steps".
Below are the student survey results from a Grade 1 class and a Grade 6/7 class. From this data the team saw some growth with student confidence in learning math. This data also helps us understand how our students like to learn. We would like to continue looking into the building of resiliency in another area of learning for next year.
Continuing with using the core competencies of personal awareness and responsibility to guide student learning we as a staff decided to shift our curricular competencies from math to writing. Over the past year, teachers have noticed that students were struggling with their writing; process, conventions, ideas, creativity, risk-taking, and revising and editing. We wanted to focus on how the students at Bothwell were using writing and design processes to plan, develop, and create texts for a variety of purposes and audiences as well as communicate in sentences and paragraphs, applying conventions of Canadian spelling, grammar, and punctuation. Bringing in the communication core competency of narrowing in on intent and focus, our hope is that students will communicate with intention and purpose. They will understand that communication can influence, entertain, teach, inspire, and help us make sense of the world and our experiences.
Our plan is to create a committee in September to begin our Student Learning Plan on SEL with a curricular focus on Literacy, specifically writing.